I have taken four days of sick leave the last three weeks. Not that I intended to, rather as a result of a spell of Vertigo. I have been suffering from an inter ear problem for about five weeks. On Wednesday July 14 I had run an errand in the Pentagon and when I returned to the office I began to feel ill. A colleague who happens to be an EMT realized something was wrong and had me lie down and dialed 911. The next thing I knew the office was filled with medics, cops and even the Surgeon General of the Army (a three star!) and eventually the Arlington County EMS. While scary and not very funny at the time, when I commented to the Surgeon General he was too busy to be worrying about me, he replied “This was fun as he was able to be a Doctor again, and all he was missing was a boring brief.” as I was not sure what was happening having the top Army Doc around was reassuring particularly when you are scared and I was.
Once the EMS arrived they quickly ruled out heart, normal EKG, and stroke through a blood pressure check and the stroke neurological exam. However the world was spinning around me. I was then transported to Virginia Hospital Center where I was put immediately into an emergency room. I must admit while I have no idea how we got there by ambulance, but it is rather exciting to ride in the back of an ambulance with lights and sirens.
At the Virginia Hospital Center I was well cared for, although I must admit I remember little of it as I was so groggy. I do remember the little man, who I believe was Indian or Pakistani, asking me to sign the paperwork on for admission while I was throwing up and me telling him not now! Once I was initially seen by the doctor I was taken to get a MRI or CAT scan of the noggin. The doctor again saw me said my sinus were messed up, gave me Antivert and told me to see my Primary Care Physician. At some point I called Debbie (who already knew how I left the Pentagon thanks to a friend who I asked to call her) and told her where I was. Of course she was clueless so I suggested she call Lisa Shutt the wife of Dave Shutt VMI 82 to see if she or her son could ride with Debbie. They arrived about 7:30 PM just as I was feeling normal. It was only then I realized that across the hall were two sheriffs deputies and a prisoner from the Arlington County jail!
As we were getting ready to leave the nurse by the name of Julie came in. She looked vaguely familiar so I looked at here name tag and saw here last name was Wisecarver. At which point I asked her if her father was Charlie Wisecarver who grew up in Lexington Virginia. It was. Charlie and I graduated from the same high school class at Lexington High School.
Debbie and Lisa got me back to the car and started to reverse their map quest route back home. They mentioned the hospital was on George Mason Drive and I then gave them the shorter route home! While groggy at least I knew where I was.
Since then I have had two more Vertigo sessions. I have an appointment next week at the EENT and hopefully that will get to the bottom of it. I suspect as I still have some inter ear blockage that is the root problem. I am taking it a day at a time. One of the problems with Antivert is it make you very sleepy. I am taking it twice a day but I cannot take it with a decongestant as it is according to the instruction bad juju. Nor can I drink beer!
I am not really sick but having sessions of Vertigo at work is not cool either. So I will take it day to day. Having had Vertigo I would not wish it on my worst enemy. It is one of those things which is not really serious but really screws you up. The treatment is as bad as the Vertigo as it makes you groggy and lethargic.
Of course it could be worse.